After three weeks of increases, diesel prices drop a smidge

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | Monday, April 24, 2017

The average price of a gallon of on-highway diesel went down two-tenths of a cent to $2.595 per gallon for the week ending Monday, April 24. This marks the first decrease after three straight weeks of increases.

Diesel price averages went down in 4 of 10 regions in the U.S., according to the Energy Information Administration, enough to drop the overall average. The largest average decrease was in the Midwest region, where prices at the pump went down by six-tenths of a cent per gallon. Prices increased by 1.2 cents in the New England region, the largest increase in the nation.

Following are the average prices by region as reported by the EIA:

  • U.S. – $2.595, down two-tenths of a cent
  • East Coast – $2.632, up one-tenth of a cent
  • New England – $2.65, up 1.2 cents
  • Central Atlantic – $2.785, up two-tenths of a cent
  • Lower Atlantic – $2.52, down two-tenths of a cent
  • Midwest – $2.530, down six-tenths of a cent
  • Gulf Coast – $2.458, unchanged
  • Rocky Mountain – $2.662, up 1 cent
  • West Coast – $2.875, down two-tenths of a cent
  • West Coast less California – $2.786, down five-tenths of a cent
  • California – $2.947, up one-tenth of a cent

According to ProMiles, the average retail price at truck stops was $2.552 on Monday morning, a seven-tenths of a cent decrease from last week.

ProMiles, the software company that maintains the websites ProMiles.com and TruckMiles.com, continues to offer its own weekly fuel price information. The company’s fuel price data are presented in the same format used by the EIA in the agency’s weekly reports. The prices include a national average as well as regional averages, and comparisons to the previous week and the previous year.

A key difference between the EIA and ProMiles reporting is the type and number of fueling stations the company surveys in order to calculate its averages. While EIA surveys 400 truck stops and convenience stores nationwide, ProMiles uses its direct feed from thousands of truck stops to develop its averages.

TruckMiles.com listed the daily average price for Monday at $2.626, with truckers in Pennsylvania paying an average of $3.078 per gallon, the highest in the nation. Truckers in Oklahoma are paying a national low of $2.40 per gallon, according to the site. No states in the Lower 48 states have been listed in excess of $4 per gallon at the pump since Dec. 4, 2014. One state, Pennsylvania, is reporting average prices above $3, unchanged from last week. No states have reported average diesel prices below $2 since April 27, 2016.

AAA has indexed diesel prices at $2.534 for Monday, 39.7 cents more expensive than this time last year and 2.6 cents higher than a month ago.

In separate energy news, according to the New York Mercantile Exchange, light sweet crude (also known as West Texas Intermediate) for May delivery was trading at $49.26 at noon CDT on Monday, a $3.39 decrease from last Monday and a 36-cent decrease from its last settlement price. The price of Brent crude oil for June settlement was listed at $51.62, a $3.74 decrease from last Monday and a 34-cent decrease from its last settlement price.

According to Reuters, oil prices continued a downward trend as OPEC has not confirmed whether or not it will extend production cuts throughout the rest of the year. The original deal ends on June 30.

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